Honey, call the script doctor, because the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical that just hit Sacramento sure needs help.The setting is the rural Bible Belt, and the show is remarkably dark, opening at a funeral. But, since Mr. Lloyd Webber is involved, there’s an uplifting anthem.
The title song is one of the few good things this show has going for it. The characters, major and minor, are cotton candy clichés, unable to sustain dramatic weight. There’s a pudgy southern sheriff, straight from Central Casting.
There’s also an escaped convict in a bloody shirt, who – get ready – finds goodness in his heart when he meets an angelic, pure-hearted 16-year-old girl.
The story suffers from shifting goal posts. It tries to be an allegory about childhood faith, then it wants to be a love triangle. Ultimately, it’s a mishmash, and several scenes – like one involving actors pretending to be Pentacostals, handling rubber snakes – are just plain shoddy. Jeff Hudson